Best Bushcraft Backpacks [2019 Survival Buyer’s Guide]

Bushcraft backpacks are an absolute necessity for any serious camper or hunter. Bushcraft backpacks get rid of all the annoyances of regular backpacks and can help you optimize your outdoor experience. Read on to hear more about bushcraft backpacks and the best models out there on the market today.

Best Bushcraft Backpacks Comparison Chart

Product

Rating

Price

Eberlestock Operator Pack

Teton Sport Scout 3400

Reebow Gear Military Tactical Backpack

ALPS OutdoorZ Commander

Karrimor SF Sabre 45

What is a Bushcraft Backpack?

A bushcraft backpack is a backpack that is specifically designed for outdoor use, and especially extended outdoor use.

Bushcraft backpacks are intended to enable their users to easily haul around all of the supplies they will need for an extended outdoor trip, whether that is for camping or hunting. 

Additionally, the ideal bushcraft backpack will remain compact enough for the wearer to navigate through tricky outdoor situations, while still ensuring they are able to carry all of their necessary items.

Teton Sport Scout 3400 is ideal for hiking too!

How to Choose a Bushcraft Backpack

There are a number of features you want to take into consideration when choosing your ideal bushcraft backpack:

Durability

Because you are most likely going to be using your backpack to help you stay alive in situations where you will not be able to easily contact other people, you do not want a pack that is going to rip apart on you after your first day of hard trekking.

REEBOW GEAR Military Tactical Backpack

Storage

Of course, the whole point of a bushcraft backpack is that it can carry everything you need to keep you alive while in the bush! Bushcraft backpacks can be organized in a number of different ways, so make sure you find the option that works best for you. Some people prefer a variety of pockets to ensure they know exactly where all of their supplies are – if that is your style, make sure you find a pack that can accommodate.

Versatility

The best bushcraft backpacks also make awesome every day backpacks. And who knows, if you ever find yourself in an unexpected emergency situation on your way to work, a bushcraft backpack could come in handy!

Quick Take | Best Bushcraft Backpacks

Before diving into our review of the best bushcraft backpacks, here is a quick take of our top 3 picks:

Review of the Best Bushcraft Backpacks

We have compiled a list of the best bushcraft backpacks you will be able to find:

Pros

  • Great for backwoods camping
  • Durable enough to last a long, long time
  • Provides a rifle scabbard that will fit most guns
  • Zippers are high quality and do not break easily
  • Can carry everything you need for a four night camping trip

Cons

  • Rain cover will not fit around the entirety of the pack if you use the straps to attach a sleeping bag at the bottom

The Eberlestock Operator Pack is the ideal backpack for hauling around everything you need to survive, whether you are preparing for a camping trip that will last multiple nights, or you are in an emergency situation and need to be able to survive in the wild.

This pack has it all. It comes from the reliable Eberlestock brand, so you know already that this pack is high quality. And it certainly will not disappoint. It comes with well padded straps that are efficiently designed to help maximize weight distribution and make this pack as easy to carry as possible.

Users report that they have packed it full of enough survival gear to tip the scales at over seventy pounds, but this pack will still feel manageable in weight, even when carried for days at a time.

It can also easily be customized to each individual user – the chest strap and waist belt are simple to adjust so that they can fit a person of any size. If you need additional storage, the sides of the backpack unzip to expand the interior capacity of the pack and ensure you will be able to carry around everything you could possibly need.

Bottom Line

The Eberlestock Operator Pack is an ideal survival pack. The rain cover will not cover the entire pack in every situation, but it will cover enough to prevent serious water damage.

Pros

  • Durable
  • Comfortable
  • Easy to clean
  • Fits size specifications for carry on bags for flights
  • Good for hiking trails where you may not have much space

Cons

  • If you remove the internal frame bars to wash the pack, they are difficult to put back in

The Teton Sport Scout 3400 is an awesome bushcraft backpack for individuals who may be on the smaller side. If you have been trying backpack after backpack and have not been able to find one that cinches close enough to your waist because you are shorter or thinner than the average person – this is the pack for you!

This pack was intentionally built for smaller individuals as it was originally designed for use by the Boy Scouts of America. But do not worry, there is nothing childlike or simple about this pack. It is just as durable as other bushcraft backpacks on this list and can easily last for a camping or backpacking trip that will extend for multiple days.

Its smaller size does come with a number of perks that other backpacks on this list cannot claim – namely, that it will fit the size specifications for a carry on bag, so you can carry it along with you on flights, and it is also ideal for hiking in densely wooded areas where the trail may become extremely narrow.

It is also easy to clean – users who have used it for carrying hunting kills report that it goes through the washing machine and comes out just like new. Its side and top compartments provide easy access to items you may need quickly, such as a first aid kit or tourniquet. As the Boy Scouts say – always be prepared!

Bottom Line

The Teton Sport Scout 3400 is an ideal backpack for smaller users, although the internal frame bars are difficult to remove and put back.

Pros

  • Interior is water resistant
  • Zippers are made of thick, reliable metal
  • Pack provides tons of interior pockets for organizational purposes
  • Provides enough space to carry supplies for a three day camping trip for two
  • Shoulder straps are padded enough to not start pinching under heavy weight – plus, the mesh design prevents sweat stains!

Cons

  • Waist strap is not designed for larger individuals

If you are looking for a versatile bag that you can use every day, yet still be reliable enough to depend on when taking into the outdoors or in extreme emergency situations, the Reebow Gear Military Tactical Backpack is for you! Users report that one of their favorite things about this pack is that it does not necessarily scream “military” or “bug out bag.”

The pack is small enough to not be really bulky and inconvenient when taking public transit to work or to school, yet still big enough to pack everything you may need for a 72 hour emergency kit. Some users say they were even able to fit enough supplies into it to allow them to go on a three day camping trip with two people!

This pack will come through for you no matter what you need it to accomplish. Do not hesitate – if you need a pack that can do it all, grab yourself a Reebow Gear Military Tactical Backpack.

Bottom Line

The Reebow Gear Military Tactical Backpack is an awesome, versatile pack that will effectively get the job done. If you are on the larger side, the waist strap may not fit you, though.

Pros

  • Users report three years of heavy use with no damage
  • Belt provides webbing loop on each side for firearm access
  • Adjustable crossbar on top of the pack for strapping additional items on, or hanging the pack itself from a tree
  • Straps have quick release buttons so you will be able to access anything inside your pack extremely quickly if necessary

Cons

  • Not waterproof or water resistant

The ALPS OutdoorZ Commander is a great pack for hauling large quantities of supplies over extended distances. This pack was rated extremely highly by both campers and hunters – one user reported that they used it for a two week solo camping expedition where it enabled them to be able to carry 96 pounds of supplies for over 80 miles in the Colorado backcountry.

If that is not a ringing endorsement of the effectiveness of this pack, we are not sure what would be. Hunters report that it is also extremely efficient for packing out meat after a kill. This pack does make some accommodations specifically for hunters or those campers who feel comfortable carrying a gun: the waist belt has a webbing loop on each side for holding a firearm, and the side pockets are reinforced with thick pockets to resist abrasion from carrying heavy metallic items.​

If you are not a gun person, though, these pockets are also extremely helpful when hauling around tent poles or a survival axe, so you never have to worry about a sharp edge cutting through and ruining your pack.

Bottom Line

The ALPS OutdoorZ Commander is a fantastic pack for carrying large quantites over long distance. The only thing to consider is that it is not waterproof, so you will have to buy some sort of water resistant cover if you anticipate encountering rain.

Pros

  • Can carry enough food for an entire week
  • Designed specifically to fit larger individuals
  • Endorsed by multiple survival Youtube channels
  • Multiple interior pockets for maximized organization
  • Expands to provide more space, but is also compact enough for daily use when commuting to work or school

Cons

  • No straps on the bottom to attach a sleeping bag
  • Because the frame is made of foam, the pack is not easily adjustable

If your primary motive for buying a bushcraft backpack is to find a pack that will take a heavy load and make it feel like nothing, the Karrimor SF Sabre 45 is your top choice. What differentiates the Karrimor Sabre from other packs is its special design: it features a back plate that is made of rigid foam, the sole purpose of which is to support users in carrying heavier loads.

Users report their load weight is cut in half when they put it in this Karrimor backpack, so they are able to actually “carry more” (get it?). This pack does not compromise in other areas, either – it is made of ballistic nylon, a material that is designed by the United States Army to literally last forever, so you will not be able to find a more durable bushcraft backpack.

It has a plethora of internal pockets to keep all of your supplies organized, and when you are not using all of those pockets, the pack is also compact enough to easily be used for simply commuting between work and home. This pack has got it all!

Bottom Line

The Karrimor SF Sabre 45 is the market leader in reducing load weight. You do trade off some adjustability when you go with the foam frame, however.

Conclusion

A good bushcraft backpack can literally make the difference between life and death for a serious camper or hunter. The last thing you want while you are out in the wilderness alone is for the bag with all of your necessary supplies to rip, tear, or otherwise fail you. The bushcraft backpacks reviewed on this list will help you stay alive and genuinely enjoy your outdoor experience, whether you are hiking, camping, or hunting. Make sure you find one that fits all of your specific needs, and then breathe easier the next time you are out on your own. Do not compromise on your own safety – find an awesome bushcraft backpack that will always have your back.

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